|I can if I want to|
|Wednesday, March 28, 2012|
By JOHN L. SLOAN
It is hard to get a lot of passion up when you can’t get in your driveway because it is blocked by wild turkeys. When your backyard is full of birds with beards, sitting in the dark waiting for one gobble while still in the tree doesn’t hold much allure. As your truck gets white highlights from the hen sitting on the branch over your driveway, the urge to kill may be high but the desire to hunt is not.But I can kill a turkey if I want to.
Take the morning a few years ago when I sat comfortably against the bole of a huge magnolia tree in LA-Lower Alabama. The gobbler was hung up somewhere well beyond my vision. I had tried what few tricks I knew and none had produced any hope. So I asked myself, “What would Bo do?” Bo Pitman is maybe the best turkey hunter I know. What he does often is sit quietly and wait. I am semi-skilled at that.
I leaned back against the big tree and closed my eyes. The air was thick with the scent of honeysuckle. It was so strong, you could almost cut it with one of Jeanne’s dull kitchen knives. I listened to the birds and I’ll admit, I may have dozed slightly.
When next I opened my eyes, the gobbler was standing 40-yards just to my left front. I did what Bo would do. I waited until he turned to strut and drum. When he fanned his tail, totally blocking his vision, I adjusted the three-inch magnum and when he turned back, I shot him. Then I changed my clothes and went fishing. I can kill a gobbler when I want to.
I have a ground blind waiting for me at one of the places I deer hunt. It is well hidden under a high electrical tower and the last time I hunted it, I was totally surrounded by turkeys. Of course, I was deer hunting. However, I feel confident I can kill a gobbler there if I want to. I see them there often.
The season opened last Saturday and runs through May 13. We can kill one bearded bird per day not to exceed four for the season. Shot size must number four or smaller.
I certainly won’t kill four and seriously doubt I will kill more than two and probably one will suffice. The weather will have to be just right. I like to hunt on perfect spring mornings. The only time I went last year, the worst storm of the spring ambushed Big Daddy and I.
Thirty-minutes after we quit, there were two big gobblers strutting around in a field near my house. I like days such as the one a few years ago when I dressed in my cammies and took the boat out of Misty Cove. I went fishing. However, as I cast my suspending jerk bait around the point at Big Slough, a bird gobbled just a rock throw inland.
I tied the boat off and slipped a few yards into the narrow band of woods. I purred and yelped a couple times and a double gobble came thundering back to me. I slightly changed the point of aim on the 3-inch and waited. Twenty seconds later, his red head bobbed above the bead and I made him flop around in the leaves.
Then I went back to fishing. I can kill a gobbler if I want to.